One Degree Thermostat Change Could Save NYC Buildings $145M Per Year: Energy Manager Today


Retroficiency Energy Manage

Analyzing publicly available building data, Retroficiency’s Building Genome Project mapped the characteristics of New York City’s 30,000-commercial-building portfolio to develop energy models.

The Building Genome Project maps the hundreds of distinct markers that influence how a building consumes energy. These markers, composed of mechanical equipment, construction materials, fuel sources, operational characteristics and more, make up a building’s unique genome. The project combines publicly available genomic information with analytics to help create energy models of each building using Retroficiency’s Building Efficiency Intelligence (BEI) platform. The energy models estimate how each building consumes energy on an end-use level and identifies how each building could improve under different energy-saving scenarios.

Findings among the 30,000 commercial buildings analyzed include:

  1. New York City could save $145 million on annual energy costs if every building turned the thermostat up one degree in the summer and down one degree in the winter.
  2. New York City could save $227 million on annual energy costs if every building with old windows installed new, efficient windows.
  3. New York City could save $10 million annually if every building with an oil boiler that uses number 4 or 6 oil replaced it with a natural gas boiler.

New York City was the first major city analyzed as part of this project. Using its models, Retroficiency ran the three example energy efficiency scenarios to understand their relative impact on New York City’s commercial building portfolio. The three scenarios selected are not designed to define the best or most important efficiency changes. They’re designed to provide representative guidance at the zip code level on the potential impact of similar changes on the building portfolio. The Building Genome Project will continue to analyze major cities across the United States.